Vintage bicycle 50 cent pillow tutorial

How to make a 50 cent pillow.  Cute and easy. Easy 20 minute project for beginners.

I saw a similar pillow on Pinterest and loved it.  I followed the link  and it took you to a site where it was for sale for only $54.00 plus shipping.  Yikes.  Even if I wanted to pay the $54.00 for it, I couldn’t as it was sold out.

I thought, I can make one and so I made one. Next time I will use linen but for my test one I used what I had on hand which was felt.  Cheapo felt.  My cheapo felt was even more cheapoish since I bought it at the thrift store and only paid 99 cents for it. I have enough felt left after finishing to make 3 more.

Mine is incredibly cute.  Problem is I have don’t have a high-tech camera nor are my photography skills quite what I hope they would be.   It is what it is. :)  You can still follow my instructions using linen or cotton and save yourself $54.00 and be proud as a peacock too.

To make cut two 16″ squares of fabric.

59 cent pillow tutorial at







Now is the tricky part if you have never done this before.  Do NOT transfer your image to your pillow fabric until you practice a couple times on scrap fabric.  Once you do this a couple times it is easy and you almost never fail.

Find a print you would like.  I found the old vintage bike image on the fabulous website “Graphics Fairy“.  There are several images to pick from.  None with a basket though but I didn’t care.   To follow this method of transferring an image you MUST use a lazer printer.  I specifically bought a lazer printer to do this.  I bought  mine from Craigslist and only paid $25.00 for it and it had a full cartridge of ink too.  I’ve been using it over a year and it is still going strong.  Anyway, print your image.  You can print directly from Graphics Fairy or re size the image in Word, Corel, Photoshop, or even OpenOffice.  Anything will work. (If you don’t have a lazer print, you local library probably does. If not, you can print at any Staples or Office Max store.)

Easy 50 cent pillow tutorial at







Turn your image over with the ink side against the fabric.  Tape into place.  Sorry I thought I took a picture of it taped down but I didn’t.  Just a little snippet of tape on all 4 sides will do.

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This is the magic stuff. Xylol Xylene.  You get it at Home Depot or Lowes.  I recently saw in it Home Depot and it was somewhere in the $18 range.  I have my jug for over 2 years and I have used 1/4 of a cup and I’m always transferring images with it.  Works just as easily on wood too.  (I’ll show you how to do that soon.)  If you have a friend or two (or 10) who would like to try this too, buy it and share.  You only need a little bit. You also need a small paint brush and something to rub with.  I use a small smooth piece of wood but the round part on a spoon would work too.

50 pillow tutorial at







Dip your paint brush in the Xylene.  You only want it wet not dripping.  You can see from the above picture that the image comes through when you paint it.  If you have it dripping wet, the image will bleed.  Just wet.  No dripping.  Paint only a 2″ or 3″ square at a time.

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Once you have painted your 3″ square use your stick or spoon and rub over the wet. This dries very quickly too.

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You paint, you rub, you repeat and repeat till you have the whole image transferred.

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Image transferred. Yeah!  Now time to make it into a pillow.

50 cent pillow tutorial at







Sew around all edges of the pillow using your presser foot as a guide and leaving a 5″ opening for turning.  Clip your corners to reduce bulk.  Turn right side out.  I didn’t press mine because it was cheapo felt but if you were using linen or cotton, be sure to give it a good press.

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Stuff your pillow with stuffing. My pillow was so inexpensive to make because I thrifted the felt and I also thrifted the stuffing.  This bag was so old it was only originally $1.60 at Murphy’s.  I think Murphy’s have been closed for decades. Regardless it was a huge bag and I paid $.50 for it.  I only used 1/4 of the bag to stuff the pillow.  Stock up on stuffing when you see it at the thrift store or garage sale.  It doesn’t go bad.   Stitch your opening.  I used a quick hidden stitch.

50 cent pillow tutorial at







I’m not a big dried flower fan.  Just little dust collectors to me so I didn’t have much to pick from.  I had one little bunch and from it I snipped a couple little buds.  Next time I may buy a little bunch from the dollar store.  Gather your flowers and size accordingly.  Hot glue them to your image if you want flowers.  I also added the bow to cover up the glue.  I also added some additional sparkle with some gems on the wheels.

50 cent pillow tutorial at







That is it.  You transferred an image and made a quick and easy pillow.  Have fun.

See you next time.


8 thoughts on “Vintage bicycle 50 cent pillow tutorial

  1. It came out lovely! I’ve never tried this method of transferring images. I had a go at the special paper that you print on then iron with limited success, we have a laser printer a work which I could use if I ask nicely, I might give this s go. Thanks

    • I have never had much luck with the special paper either plus you always see the edge of the paper around the image. This way really is so very easy once you get the hang of it. It works exactly the same on wood too. I make signs with quotes and use this method of transferring too. Be careful though, it is quite addictive once you see how easy and pretty it is. If you run into issues and have any questions, just ask. Thanks for reading.

  2. Great idea. You were so smart no to pay $54 for a pillow. Yours looks great. Did a wonderful job. Thanks so much for sharing . Visiting from What We Live Wednesdays Blog Hop.

  3. Adorable! And so clever . . . isn’t it great fun to see something that is expensive and figure out how to make it yourself for a fraction of the cost? So glad I stopped by from the Thursday Favorite Things Blog Hop at Katherine’s Corner. Hope to see you again this week. If you get a minute, please stop by my blog at to see some of the free craft tutorials I have posted there. Have a great Wednesday!

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